The Alexandria Archaeological Commission awarded me its Outstanding Researcher Award at a ceremony at City Hall last week. In addition to a lovely, "dig-inspired" trophy (here I am staring at it, instead of the camera, along with another recipient, Andy Flora): In City Proclamation-ese:
Whereas a 2015 Brenman Award for Outstanding Researcher is presented to Paula Tarnapol Whitacre, volunteer researcher, for her coordination and supervision of many other volunteers in transcribing the Julia Wilbur diaries....for brining to the public's awareness, Julia Wilbur, abolitionist and aid worker who came to Alexandria during the Civil War, whose diaries are an in depth Civil War era primary resource....[etc. etc.]...
October is Virginia Archaeology Month, so it was a lovely time to be honored (actually, let's face it, anytime is a lovely time to be honored).
As another part of the month's activities, the City Archaeologist, Francine Bromberg, presented about the City's archaeology program, which made me proud to be a part of it. In 1989, the city adopted the Archaeological Code Master Plan (one of the first in the nation), which covers all "ground disturbance" over a certain size. They conducted 11,000 reviews since then, finding and documenting Alexandria's residential, industrial, and wartime past. Just in the past few weeks, archaeologists have been excavating a site on South Union Street, on the Old Town waterfront.